July 2018
PPAMidwest Board Member Spotlight
This month's Board Member Spotlight is on Stephanie Thompson. Thompson has served on the board since 2017 and holds the position of our current Secretary. Thompson is employed by Cutter & Buck and has shared the following fun facts:

Q: What is your favorite cereal?
A: Life – who doesn’t like Life? Mikey had it right.

Q: At which store would you like to max-out your credit card?
A: It pains me a little to admit but…Amazon. With four kids, I can literally buy anything we need.
Q: Can you play any instruments?
A: Piano – had a few years of lessons in my youth, but pretty sure I can only play chopsticks at this point.
Q: What is the oldest thing in your refrigerator?
A: Mustard – doesn’t get used much in my house.
Q: What is the nerdiest thing you do in your spare time?
A: Robotics with my kids. My oldest was super in to it. Now we just build computers.
Q: Which way does your toilet paper hang on the wall (over or under)?
A: Always over. Always. There is no other way.
Q: What are three things still left on your bucket list?
A: Travel to Europe.
Q: If you could have any one superpower, which would you choose?
A: Being able to fly…I would travel the world.  
PPAMidwest News
Gene Geiger, MAS+, And Charles Pecher Named To The PPAI Hall of Fame  
PPAI has selected Gene Geiger, MAS+ (left), co-owner and CEO of Lewiston, Maine, distributor Geiger, and Charles "Chuck" Pecher, president of St. Louis, Missouri-based supplier Skinner & Kennedy, as its 2019 Hall of Fame inductees. The induction ceremony will take place during the Chairman's Leadership Dinner at The PPAI Expo in Las Vegas, January 13-17, 2019 at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center.
The promotional products industry has grown and prospered because of the creative spark and dedication of many, but the selfless efforts and industry devotion of some individuals are monumental. PPAI gives them permanent recognition through induction into its Hall of Fame.
"Gene's and Chuck's years of leadership and volunteer service have guided and benefited PPAI in innumerable ways," says Paul Bellantone, CAE, PPAI president and CEO. "Their vision for this great industry still guides us today."
Induction into the PPAI Hall of Fame reflects Geiger's and Pecher's legacies and contributions to the promotional products industry and their communities.

IMAGEN Brands is pleased to announce that Rory Campbell expands National Accounts Role.

Mason, OHIMAGEN Brands National Accounts Manager, Rory Campbell, has expanded his role to include additional partners, Safeguard, AIA, and The Partnering Group.

Campbell shares, “ I’ve been with Vitronic for 15 years. I started as an Inside Sales Rep, then 11 ½ years as a Regional Sales Manager. I moved into my current role as National Account Manager for the past 2 ½ years. I’m excited to start working with Safeguard, AIA, and The Partnering Group distributors, and discuss with them all things IMAGEN Brands has to offer to help them serve their clients in the best possible way.”

Ryan Meulemans, District Sales Manager, comments, “ We are very excited to have Rory taking over Safeguard, AIA, and The Partnering Group. Rory has proved great success working with several major customers in the industry. We look forward to him building valuable partnerships with these customers.” 

Ira Neaman Appointed To PPAI Board
Ira Neaman, founder and president of Avenel, New Jersey, supplier Vantage Apparel, has joined the PPAI Board of Directors, effective immediately, to fill the seat vacated by Lori Kates, who has stepped down. He was appointed by PPAI Board Chair Dale Denham, MAS+, and approved by the board to fill the remainder of Kates's term, which ends at The PPAI Expo 2022.
Neaman graduated from Syracuse University in 1974 and earned his Master of Business Administration degree from Harvard in 1976. He founded Vantage in 1977. An active volunteer in the promotional products industry for more than 40 years, Neaman has served on several PPAI committees, including the Leadership Advisory Committee, the Strategic Planning Committee, and the Marketing and Research Committee, as well as the Promotional Products Education Foundation Board and several industry task forces. In 2002, he became the inaugural recipient of the PPAI Education Lifetime Achievement Award, and Counselor magazine named him its Person of the Year in 2003 and has included him in its Power 50 since 2008.
Wild Wednesday Webinars - Lunch and Learn at your desk!
“Get In Touch! How to Use PPAI Research and Resources to Grow Your Business”
presented by Dana Geiger with PPAI
Wed, July 25, 2018 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM CST

Content is the new currency that drives brand engagement. It is about being a valuable resource, a trusted authority and sharing information, rather than pitching products and services. The Get In Touch!® campaign includes great content that supports your efforts to reach and engage clients and prospects—whether that content is a presentation, digital and social ads, print and video tools, a sleek infographic or a well-crafted case study. This session will focus on how to create and leverage the many forms of content to promote your business, influence word of mouth and leverage content as a value-driven differentiator. Get in touch by delivering valuable content in the right forms and places, specifically designed to communicate the power of promo to buyers everywhere.

Learning Outcomes:
•  Understanding of the Get In Touch Campaign (When and How It Evolved)        
•  Access to the toolkit and resources available for use in your individual
•  Why utilizing these resources will set you apart from your competition and align you as an industry powerhouse
Industry News

4, 3, 2, 1 - Go!

ThaThe new PPAI Certification program has officially launched. If you're new to certification, you'll want to start by checking out our Trained Advertising Specialist (TAS) program.
If you're already on your journey, we have some exciting changes. You can find them all on our website, but here are a few highlights.
  • No long exams
  • Dedicated content
  • Fast track program for industry veterans

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – T he Quality Certification Alliance (QCA) , has reached a milestone this July, commemorating ten-years as the promotional product industry’s only independent, non-profit accrediting organization dedicated to validating industry manufacturing and sourcing processes. QCA has grown from a group of fourteen forward-looking companies in search of a comprehensive industry standard for compliance - to the industry model for world-class brand safety through responsible sourcing of branded merchandise.  
How to Accomplish More in 4 Days Than Most People Do in 4 Weeks

Practice and self-control are key.

We all know that it takes hard work to achieve our goals. And in the world of business and entrepreneurship, we often hear how we must be willing to sacrifice weeks, months, even years of slaving away to suceed.

But what if we’re all just doing it wrong? What if there was a way to accomplish a huge to-do list in less than half the time it would normally take? Barring the discovery of a time machine or a wormhole, you might say this is impossible. But with a little practice and self-control, it’s possible to get to the finish line before most people even start the race.
Product Responsibility Summit 2018
September 16-18 - Alexandria, Virginia - The Westin Alexandria

Product Responsibility. Consumers Are Demanding It.
Now in its ninth year, Let us let you in on a little secret. Understanding the importance of product responsibility in today's economy can help differentiate your business from that of your competition. Want to know how?
The Product Responsibility Summit continues to evolve to broaden its educational scope and is considered the must-attend program for safety and compliance professionals by companies throughout the industry.
Be among the more than 180 attendees who will take advantage of two days of content-rich education sessions and panel discussions. Topics of discussion will include new developments in social responsibility, the impact of tech trends like IOT and blockchain on the promotional products industry, addressing the new Prop 65 warning requirements and much more.

* Free Resource Manual * Two Networking Dinners (included in reg cost) *
* Become PSA Aware Or Renew Your Designation *
* Industry Expert-Led Sessions * Q&A And Round Table Discussions *